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Very Important ????

Mcgill Smith
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 11, 2003
Posts: 178
Although i cannot afford 150$ for the Test but i still bought HF EJB.
I received my copy yesterday,it appears to be very well written and i think i will learn alot from this book.

PLEASE READ this link
I have two question:
1 - Even if i can arrange 150$,does passing SCBCD exam help in getting a job?
2 - What does it mean to be SCBCD in the job market? is it == 6 months experience in ejb's?
YES i have worked on several web projects!(2001)servlets,jsp also some ejbeans.
[ November 11, 2003: Message edited by: Mcgill smith ]

Vishwa Kumba
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 27, 2003
Posts: 1066
It sounds like, the link U posted is about a company which is trying to collect money from employees to give them a job. You dont't have to pay them upfront.They keep your first 2 months pay aand start paying U in the 3rd month!!......Are we living in a democratic world? Where are the human trafficking laws?
Not sure if this is the right forum to express my opinion about the exam.
Me too, feel that the exam is expensive. Do they have to charge 150$? The next time I am going to take the exam, I am going to tell Sun in their customer survey , that the exam is EXPENSIVE and not all Java programmers can afford it. Sun certification does improve one's knowledge but does not guarantee anything in the job's prospects. In fact, most of the times it does not help at all. It can be used as a marketing spree to woo some of the recruitment agencies, and if you are lucky, they may fall for it, and you may have ur CV shortlisted......and in the technical interview, it is YOU(your experience and knowledge) and ONLY YOU, and not ur CERTIFICATION, who will be answering the holy technical questions.
I believe SUN is a big sensible company and can easily afford to reduce the price, and set an example for the other companies.If prometric centers can't afford to conduct the exam for a lesser price, there would be other companies who can.
Praveena Venigalla
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 29, 2003
Posts: 36
I too agree the cost of exam is higher for person to get certification.Hope there will be lot of companies who can conduct exmas better tha prometric for less cost (if Promertic not ready to conduct exam for less cost)

Praveena Venigalla<br />OCP,SCJP,SCWCD,SCBCD<br />--Knowledge is attained by learning to hold one's tongue
Amin Rais

Joined: Aug 28, 2002
Posts: 20
In EUROPE it's even more expensive..
I spent 270 EURO + TAX for the SCEA-PART II, it's almostly 300 EUR.
For this SCBCD maybe it will be 170 EURO + TAX. Ohh... 170 EUR
is around 190 USD, and it's not tax included yet !!
Kathy Sierra
Cowgirl and Author

Joined: Oct 10, 2002
Posts: 1589
Howdy -- wow -- that article was AWFUL (what it said, anyway). That's just ridiculous and probably *evil* to ask someone *with experience* to work for free. Some companies would do it the other way 'round and say, "If we're going to spend the money to train you, then we expect you to stay with us for one year..." or something like that, which is often quite reasonable. But these folks are saying, "We'll train you, but you have to pay for it by working for free..."
OK, anyway, I wanted to address your other question. We don't have enough statistics to know if the SCBCD is going to *directly* translate into a job. It might help if the employer is choosing between otherwise *equally-experienced* candidates, to be the one with the cert. Some employers pay a great deal of attention to certifications, while others do not care at ALL about certifications, and instead care only about real work experience.
In general, though, the certification *can* help you answer many interview questions correctly -- perhaps on topics that another candidate who did NOT prepare for the exam would not be able to answer, even if that candidate had a lot of real world experience. Most of us tend to *learn* only the things we need for our current projects. At Sun, we see a lot of people fail exams -- despite a lot of practical experience -- because they knew ONLY the things that they used in their projects. They may have known those things REALLY well, but they had too many other gaping holes in their knowledge. And it's the same with EJB. Someone may have a ton of experience... on a 1.0 server! Which means they may never have used entity beans, or someone else may have experience with BMP and will view the EJB world only from a BMP perspective even though *now* with EJB 2.0 it makes much more sense to use only CMP (with a 2.0-compliant server).
So, if the question is "does preparing for the exam help?" I would say YES. Does actually going through with it and getting the certification help? Maybe. Maybe not. We tend to think that it's usually worth it, but it is certainly no guarantee, especially today. But again, it can help you have the edge if you are competing with someone who has equal experience.
And yes, the exam was designed to reflect the experience level of someone who had been working with the technology for six months. Now, in a real-world environment, with six months experience you would probably have spent a great DEAL of that time on administrative/configuration/work-around issues, etc. related to your particular app server. But that experience will help you ONLY if you are applying for a job that uses that same server. In other words, if someone wants to hire someone who knows the particular quirks, problems, work-arounds for a particular vendor's server, then it may be worth it to them to find someone who knows THAT server, even if their overall EJB knowledge is weak. That might not be a smart choice, though, because we see people make terrible mistakes in their code because while they DID know how to get their server working and deploy beans to it, they didn't have enough deep understanding of how things worked to be able to write smart, portable code (knowing both what to write and also where and when to put it).
Now, as for the PRICE of the exam, I, too wish they were a little lower. But I can tell you *something* about that. Sun is under a tremendous legal (and ethical/moral) obligation to make the exams as fair as possible. That means extensive analysis is done by a separate "psychometric" vendor whose job it is to evaluate the beta results and carefully prepare the exam in such a way that whoever takes it will have an exam that is exactly equivalent to everyone else, even though exam candidates do NOT all see the same questions!
For example, your exam will contain questions that are different from what another candidate might see, but both of your exams are statistically proven to be equivalent in difficulty level, and both will be drawn from the same objective areas. (e.g. you won't get 15 thread questions while someone else gets only 2, for instance).
Also, the exams are edited and reviewed by the psychometricians who ensure, for example, that while native English speakers have an advantage, obviously, the exam can still be as clear as possible to non-native speakers. They also check the wording to be absolutely certain that we are not using ambiguous terms.
If you've been on javaranch cert forums for long, you'll know that we are always saying things like, "Yes, that's a problem with that mock exam question, but don't worry because the real exam does NOT have ambiguous questions like that..." That's because none of us are able to put our mock exams through that process.
Also, some exam takers have threatend Sun with lawsuits because they did not pass the exam. Part of my job with Sun certification is to review the exams of people who have not passed, in order to verify that there was not a mistake and that they indeed answered the questions incorrectly. So legal and administrative work to deal with people who simply didn't study enough and now want to complain ("I can't POSSIBLY have failed the exam... I'm a Java expert!" is something I hear a lot from people who wouldn't know a thread if it hit them in the face) is another part of the overhead that Sun incurs.
So it isn't just the initial development of the exam that is expensive, but also having the exam in process is another ongoing expense -- there are a lot of people who have to do work all the time, to administer the vouchers, maintain the exams, etc.
Remember, certification is *not* the business that Sun is in -- it is simply an industry standard certification that Sun does only because customers ask for it. This is definitely *not* some big money-making machine, and the people who work in that department and struggle with their budgets (and see co-workers laid off) would fall on the floor laughing to hear that people think it is bringing in huge amounts of money.
That said, I do wish there were a way for them to be more affordable. But unless Prometric and all of the other partners involved reduced what *they* charge Sun for the exam, it would probably be difficult. My recommendation is to choose your certifications wisely, and you can always go through the process of *preparing* for a certification, but hold off on actually taking the exam until you think it will be a benefit or when the expense is worth it to you.
But hey, javaranch is free The main reason I started javaranch in the first place was to make it easier and friendlier for people to prepare for the SCJP exam.
Nehul NN
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 05, 2003
Posts: 45
Very well said Kathy. I am SCJP & SCWCD certified and paid for SCJD, preparing for SCBCD too. Total cost for all will be $700.. is it worth.. you have said in right way.. one way it is other way not.. it's up to programmer to make full use of it. In pratical life not all unemployed can afford such amount for certification!!!
Dominic Titus

Joined: Nov 14, 2003
Posts: 1
In other well regarded professions, professionals get trained then get licensed to practice that profession. Certification comes after sufficient experience and experience is a requirement to take cert exam.
In IT, certification is a money maker for public and private organizations.
Sun, Microsoft, and others make lots of money thru their certification schemes. That venture has no risk or downside. Sun has been doing very poorly financially but its "education" division is doing very well.
IT employers desire cheap experienced workers who have proven themselves doing the same things they are being hired for. Degrees and certs increase your price and are liabilities.
Of course people related to that industry and cert book publishing industry will say otherwise. They have no hard data behind their arguments. But what do you expect from them.
But javaranch is free, so pay $150 a pop to Sun, Microsoft, IBM, and others hoping to impress someone during an interview.
Nehul NN
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 05, 2003
Posts: 45
Someone told very true.. when you don't certification find fault in other who has it.. who has it try to justify.. bottom line argument keep going...
SCJP 1.4
Dave Cronin
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 25, 2003
Posts: 114
I would not say that the certification exams are expensive compared to their value. After all, they demonstrate you have the knowledge to do professional work that pays far more than the cost of the exam. Also, at $150, the exams are much cheaper than training courses - and doing a training course does not guarantee an employer than you know anything, unlike a certification. If you regard a certification as an investment, they're not expensive. It takes a lot of work to pass the Sun certs, and the SCBCD is no walkover either. I think they are worth doing just to challenge your knowledge of the subject area, and as a motivation to learn more.
Degrees and certs don't have to increase your price by the way - rather what they do is to demonstrate your value. It is entirely up to you whether you ask an employer for a lower or a higher salary. More likely they show that you can offer better value for money to an employer, so increasing your chance of getting a job, rather than getting a higher salary.

Dave Cronin
Bill Yates

Joined: Nov 02, 2003
Posts: 5
Corporations export IT jobs to India and China not because they have certifications but because of cost. Read the recent issue (Dec 1)of Fortune magazine.
Nehul NN
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 05, 2003
Posts: 45
One day IT will understand quality versus cost.. quality doesn't come by certification either..
Ko Ko Naing
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 08, 2002
Posts: 3178
As for me, I always study for a certification, when I want to learn that technology. At first, I have no intention to sit for the SCJP exam. I read SCJP books to learn Java. But later I could fetch Java well and decided to sit for the exam. And also I read CCNA book just to learn Networking in the university. But later I became pretty good in networking and sat for the CCNA exam...
What I mean is that I always read certification book just to learn that technology... :roll: But whether to take the exam or not is another issue... As for me, I do believe that certification is a plus for a job, even though it may not be a requirement for that job...

Co-author of SCMAD Exam Guide, Author of JMADPlus
Ed Tse
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 18, 2003
Posts: 183
For me, exam is like my motivation to study. I could read 2 page of a book and stop, but I couldn't risk loosing $150 by failing an exam. Put it this way, a graduate degree doesn't do much for IT either but it's at least $1500 for a course per semester.

SCJP, Pre-SCJD (URLyBird 1.3.1), Teradata Cert'd Prof
Amer Khan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 05, 2003
Posts: 163
IMO passing a multi-choice test does not mean that you know how to program. It would be much better if these tests were more like SCJD, where at least some programming is involved. May be a small project including (jsp,servlets,ejb,jdbc,patterns etc)and call it J2ee certification. I am 100% sure that such a certification would have more value in the real world and also help us understand the technology better + prepare us for the REAL THING(jobs).

<i>Dare to dream - everything that exists today,was once a figment of someone's imagination, nobody says tomorrow can't be a figment of your today.</i>
Amer Khan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 05, 2003
Posts: 163
BTW this is the best place to learn EJB.(certification or no certification)
thanks to Kathy.
Ko Ko Naing
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 08, 2002
Posts: 3178
Originally posted by Amer Khan:
IMO passing a multi-choice test does not mean that you know how to program. It would be much better if these tests were more like SCJD, where at least some programming is involved. May be a small project including (jsp,servlets,ejb,jdbc,patterns etc)and call it J2ee certification. I am 100% sure that such a certification would have more value in the real world and also help us understand the technology better + prepare us for the REAL THING(jobs).

I agree with you, Amer... To prove that someone is really good in developing an application, he/she must have hand-on experience... I like the style of SCJD.....
James Adams
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 12, 2003
Posts: 188
I have just passed the SCJP and SCWCD certs (85% and 91%) and will begin studying for the SCBCD exam as soon as Amazon delivers Kathy's HFEJB book. I now know heaps more than I did before, simply beause I had to study a much broader and deeper range of the technologies involved than I had ever actually been exposed to by working with Java (since version 1.0). I have developed several applications of varying levels of complexity using the SDK, servlets, and JSPs but I never had to use a lot of the things I that studied, and several things I used before in my applications I had no real idea about how or why they actully worked. And I never knew about threads before having to learn about them for the SCJP exam.
I write efficient, elegant, and well-documented Java and C++ code, and now my knowledge of how it should be done is even deeper thanks to the studying I had to do to pass these two exams. Whether or not the certifications will help me get a new job is arguable (I certainly hope so), but I know I can talk about the technologies with more confidence now in an interview and I'll have a deeper understanding once I'm at work on projects again. I recommend anyone to study for the certifications which apply to their areas of development, it really is a worthwhile endeavor. I know that if I ever hire developers I will look more favorably on a candidate with these certifications, because I now their value. And as a previous poster has pointed out, $150 is paltry compared to training courses (which in my experience are a rip off), and in consideration of the expense of developing the certifications.

Off topic: Kudos on the whole JavaRanch site, especially the friendly and helpful nature of most of the Ranchers involved. Thanks to all involved !
I agree. Here's the link:
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